HNA: 1987-2012 A GREAT CELEBRATION FOR THE 25 YEARS
By Dimitri G. Soultogiannis
Special to the Hellenic News of America
Concordville, PA---The publisher of the Hellenic News of America Paul Kotrotsios hosted a great night for all those who came to celebrate the 25th anniversary of HNA at the "Concordville Inn" Hotel in Pennsylvania on Sunday October 14th 2012. Greek-Americans, Americans and Greeks all supporters of the newspaper showed up to celebrate the 25 years of the successful, bilingual, newspaper and congratulate its founder for his services in the Greek American community, the Greek civilization and all his endless efforts to keep the Greek language and culture alive in the United States.
Amongst other distinguished guests were representatives of the US government on a local, state or federal level, representatives of the Greek and Cypriot Embassies in the United States, people representing Greece and the United States, representatives of the Greek Tourism Organization as well as representatives of Greek American Organizations and Federations such as the American Hellenic Institute and AHEPA. They were all there to support and vouch for the Hellenic News of America and its founder in order for them to continue their important work and service to the community.
"We are able to celebrate our 25th anniversary thanks to the support and collaboration of many Greek-American who we thank every day in making our dream come true. In a way they are also making their dream come true. We have supporters that help us with their good faith, with bringing us into their homes and businesses, with overlooking our mistakes or omissions, with subscribing to HNA and advertising with HNA. This tremendous support is a sign that we should continue and become better with our team here and in Greece and create a forum that is accessible to all, Greeks, Americans and Greek-Americans," Kotrotsios said during his opening statements. He also thanked his family and his wife Linda for always been there for him. "Actually, many years ago when I started working a local Greek-American Radio station, Linda would always call and request songs in order to support me and my work. Little she knew, years later, she would end up dedicating her life to me and my work," Kotrotsios said.
The center of attention was of course the award recipients for their long-term services to the Greek-American community and efforts to preserve the Greek culture in the United States. Amongst them, US Senator Olympia Snowe (R-Maine), Philanthropists Mr. and Mrs. Nicholas Karabots, Mr. and Mrs. Theodore Spyropoulos, Professor Emeritus at the University of Delaware Dr. Dean Lomis, President of the Hellenic Teacher Federation and "Estia" Restaurant owners John Lois and Pete Pashalis. New York State Assemblywoman Aravela Simotas was the Mistress of ceremonies and the entertainment was provided by Stavros Theodorou and the Macedonian Dance Group of Philadelphia.
In a prerecorded message US Senator Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) who could not make it to the dinner due to previous engagements, thanked the Hellenic News of America for the award she received and congratulated Paul Kotrotsios for his services to the Greek-American community and said everyone should follow his example. "The Greek-American community needs people like Paul Kotrotsios and newspapers like the Hellenic News of America," said Snowe. "In every aspect of my life professional or personal I remind people that I am Greek, my heritage resides inside of me and is a big part of me," she added.
Marianna Spyropoulos, daughter of Theodore Spyropoulos received the award on behalf of her father. She traveled from Chicago in order to be at the 25h anniversary celebratory dinner. "I want to thank and congratulate on behalf of my father, Mr. Paul Kotrotsios for all he has done for the Greek American community, through the newspaper as well as the Hermes International Expo," Spyropoulos said and wished Paul Kotrotsios success and prosperity for the years to come.
Professor Emeritus at the University of Delaware Dr. Dean Lomis thanked the HNA team for the award in Academia. "We are all Americans either by birth or choice, but we never stop working hard for the preservation of our Greece culture in the United States. This is exactly what Paul Kotrotsios has been doing and we thank him for that," he said.
The President of the Hellenic Teacher Federation Mrs. Stella Kokolis thanked HNA publisher who is "always on the side of the Greek educator in the United States and always supporting the Greek education," Kokolis said. She also asked for everyone's help and hard work in order to keep Greek educators in the United States especially now that Greek is going through some rough financial times and cannot send any more teachers from Athens.
In conclusion, businessmen Pashalis and Lois who have been supporting the newspaper since day one praised Paul Kotrotsios for his passion to help businesses not only on the US but also abroad through the Hermes Expo International which will take place April 13-14 at the Taj Mahal Hotel in Atlantic City, NJ.